Category Archives: Motivation

The Ol’ Dogs Method offer some valuable tips to maximise results in Masters League WOD 18.1

MASTERS LEAGUE – Tips to maximise results in ML18.1 from 

 the Ol’ Dogs Method

12min EMOM for Reps of:

1 min CAL ROW

1 min PULL UPS (Jumping Pull-ups for Soldier & Warrior 55+)

1 min DOUBLE UNDERS (Singles for Soldier)

1 min DB SNATCH (22.5/15kg for Hero/Warrior 35-54; 15/10kg for Hero/Warrior 55+ & Soldier 35-54; 15/10 for Soldier 55+)

– Treat this like Fight Gone Bad and think about where your strengths lie. Transition times between movements will be a key factor in this workout so try to set up all of your equipment close to each other of possible.  Getting in and out of the Rower takes time so give yourself 5-10 secs either side to do this.

Rowing
– Out of the 4 movements this is the slowest of them all to acquire reps
– It is also the movement that takes the longest to get in and out of
– Row for about 45-50 then get yourself out and move to the pull-up rig

Pull-ups
– Depending on whether or not you can do Butterfly or Kipping Pull-ups this will be one of the faster movements to acquire reps in.
– Focus on this movement should be in managing your grip over the entirety of the workout, so small sets should be done – 5-10 reps, 2-3 breaths then go again. When you are resting make sure that you are under the bar so you can just jump back on.

Dumbell Snatches
– In order to hit the standards for this movement while still moving well it would be beneficial to put the dumbbell down in between each rep. Not only does this keep your back from blowing up it also means that you won’t risk getting no-repped.

– Think about resting and catching a breath while the dumbbell is locked out overhead.

Double Unders
– By far the easiest movement to get reps on if you have your double unders down pat.
– The transition from these to the Dumbell Snatches is also very easy to handle because you can leave your rope close to the dumbbell.
– There are two things to focus on when doing these:
Breathing – people tend to stop and hold their breath and tense up during this movement which makes them significantly harder to perform.  Stay relaxed; and
It’s all in the wrists – try to avoid big arm movements. as this will tire you out. The position you have your hands for your singles should be the same position for your double unders.

(Watch this space for more training, health and fitness tips for Masters athletes from the Ol’ Dogs Method)

 

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LEARN TO LIKE BRUSSEL SPROUTS

As a kid I hated Brussel sprouts.  If they were served up to me, I’d pop them in my mouth and chew them, then politely say I had to go to the toilet, where I’d spit them out.  Or I would cut them up into small pieces and then place my napkin and cutlery over the top of them at the end of the meal so that it looked like I finished them.  I really didn’t like them but there was no way I was getting dessert unless I “ate” them.

I thought I was being pretty sneaky and creative but these two strategies rarely ended well as my parents would simply serve me up some more or they would magically uncover the hidden sprouts for me to finish.

In my adult years though, I love them.  Cooked well, they are a tasty little morsel packed full of goodness.  Caramelised, with a little bit of honey or bacon, or maybe a vinegar dressing – they are gold.

So where am I going with this?

This month of training has seen us focus on Gymnastics, not only in our regular class programming but also in a bonus class on Saturdays.  Why?  Because Gymnastics makes up a very big part of what we do in CrossFit, plus it gives us an opportunity to improve our body awareness, coordination, balance and agility.  It makes sense that we should know how to move our bodies first, before we learn how to move external objects.

Unfortunately, everyone thinks of Gymnastics as being the sexy, glamorous movements – Bar Muscle Ups, Ring Muscle Ups, Handstand Push-ups, Pistols.  And everyone wants to do them……NOW.

Here’s the thing though – Muscles Ups, Handstand Push ups and Pistols are quite complex movements that require balance, coordination, strength, mobility and really good body awareness.  It’s a combination of all of these factors plus persistence and consistency in practice that will get you the movement.

For most of us, we cannot expect to attend a single class or workshop on these movements and pick them up straight away.  We need to break up the movement into it’s small component parts and then practice them, over and over again until we become proficient.  Then we need to string those parts together to form the whole…….and keep practicing.  Chances are, once you can actually ‘do’ the movement you then need to continually tweak it to become more efficient.  It really is never ending.

So, returning to the Brussel Sprouts story. The progressions we have been giving you for Muscle-ups, Handstand Push-ups and Pistols are the Brussel Sprouts.  The Muscle-Ups, Handstand Push-ups and Pistols are the Dessert.  You must eat your Brussel Sprouts before you get Dessert, meaning you must work on the progressions and build upon them before you will be able to do the full movements.  But you can’t just come in a for a single class and do the progressions, and expect that afterwards you should be able to do the full movement.  There are some gifted people who that may apply to, but for the rest of us mere mortals, it will require hours of consistent practice.

I taught myself how to do Ring Muscle Ups over the course of two weeks by watching YouTube videos.  But I was practicing every single day for at least 30 mins per day.  I can almost guarantee that unless you are doing some secret practice at home that I am not aware of, then you are only getting exposure to these movements 4-5 times a month during class.

I have reflected upon this scenario and that is why I have programmed a lot more Gymnastics into the coming months.  So please do not look at the WOD and see these movements included, and then decide that you are not going to come in because you cannot do them and you will only end up eating Brussel Sprouts in class.  You need to eat Brussel Sprouts!  And those people that do eat them consistently will be the ones that get Dessert.

Our next Gymnastics Workshop will be on this Saturday at 10am where we will be focussing on the Muscle Up again.  Week one saw a fantastic turnout.  Week two should have seen the same number returning because I’m pretty sure no-one walked away from the first class being able to do a perfect Muscle Up, but the numbers were significantly less.  Let’s get those numbers up again guys. Come in and eat a big hearty bowl of Brussel Sprouts.

-AB

The Masters League State of Origin – day 2

The Masters League State of Origin – day 2

I woke up on Saturday morning at 6am after having a pretty broken sleep – it must have been that bloody Maccas Angus Cheeseburger and fries I ate at 10.30pm. My body did not react well to it. I should have known better.

At 6.30am Stav (my NSW team mate) and his partner in crime, Matt “Rabs” O’Brien (both Owners and Coaches at CrossFit Zelos), picked me up and we made our way to a local café for a stiff coffee and brekky.

By 7.30am we were back at the arena amongst the very fit old people. The scent of Voltaren wafted through the air but everyone was in good spirits.

Today’s itinerary would consist of 3 individual workouts, the results of which would go towards the State Team’s total score. We received a brief instruction/warning from Master’s League mastermind, Joe Riego not to drop bars from overhead as the rubber gym mats placed on top of the spongy running track created a trampoline effect. Bouncing bars and old people don’t mix apparently.

Workout number 1 for me was 21-15-9 Burpee Box Jump Overs with each set sandwiched between 200m “Runs”. If I had to choose a workout to leave out of the weekend, this was it. It was going to be an all out effort with my engine being the limiting factor. The movements themselves weren’t hard. My engine was in dire need of a service so I knew it was going to be tough.

We watched some heats before us with guys red-lining on the first run. They got back to the box fast for the burpees but then died. Their next runs were much, much slower.   We (the guys in my heat) decided to go out easy so as not to blow out early. I was happy with that.   21 Burpees done at speed takes a lot out of you. 21 Burpee Box jump Overs just suck. I can do them but they suck!

We lined up beside our boxes on the start line. OK, here goes – getting the worst WOD out of the way first.

3, 2, 1, Go! I took off at maybe 70%. Most of the field ran out in front of me. That’s cool – stick to the plan, take it easy. I got to the turnaround bollard, and slipped, but pushed on back to the box. By the time I started my burpees, I could hear the Judges beside me counting 3…4…5 for their athletes. “Just get through it” I said in my head.

I landed my first burpee on top of the box, which felt like it was going to topple over. “Great start!”. Does anyone else have these conversations in their head while they are working?

1 rep turned to 5 reps turned to 18 reps turned to 21. They were tough. I’m normally pretty good at Burpee Box Jump Overs but my legs felt so damn heavy. This was worse than I thought and I still had 3 more runs and 24 burpees to go.

Fellow team members watching on the sideline shouted out words of encouragement, which I am always grateful for.   (A) because it really does motivate me to keep pushing, and (B) it fuels my ego in the sense that I don’t want to look soft in front of them, so I keep going.

The remainder of the WOD was a real slog for me. I had gotten to my second run before Stav (which felt good because Stav has got a better engine than me), but by the end of the 2nd set of burpees he was out in front of me along with most of the other athletes.

My plan was to just keep pushing through at a consistent pace (which was slow) and then hit the afterburners on the final 100m sprint and finish strong.

I set off on my final run and told myself, “Alright, let’s do it!”

Have you ever seen those movies where the hero has got a secret weapon up his sleeve to beat his opponent, and he presses the button to initiate it and it doesn’t work? Or he goes to shoot his enemy and he pulls the trigger only to hear a paltry “click” because he’s out of bullets. I decided to sprint home but my legs were out of bullets. I pressed the button to turn on my internal turbo charger and nothing happened. I pressed it again…….nothing. My legs were dead and at best they were going to get me back to the finish at a very slow jog. Shouts from my team members couldn’t spur me on to go any faster. My legs just weren’t cooperating. I got across the finish line at 7:06 and fell to the ground. A marshal placed a wet Chux on the back of my neck. I’ve never loved Chux wipes so much in my life.

I hung around to watch the next heat (because I was too tired to walk off). The athletes set off on their run and when they returned to the box, there were a couple of guys placing their hands on the box to leverage themselves up on top. Hang on, what’s going on here? I thought we were told we couldn’t use hands. Was this an illegal use of “HOB’s” (Hands On Box). As later heats progressed, more and more people were using their hands until by the end, everyone seemed to be doing it. IT seemed HOB’s were allowed.  I wish I had of known that. The use of HOB’s would have made my life in that WOD so much easier.

Workout number 2 was a 10 min AMRAP of 2 sets of 50 Double Unders and 9 x 60kg Snatches, followed by 15 Bar Muscle Ups. I was looking forward to this WOD. Because my engine is not my strength, I prefer workouts that have an element of technicality to them. But as always, if you haven’t got the engine available, being a good mover doesn’t always pay off, as I was about to find out.

When the WOD started I got out my Double Unders fairly easily and moved to the bar. Snatch 1 – up! Damn, that felt heavy. I knocked out 8 more singles then jumped back onto the rope. The heart rate was up and my breathing was fast. I think I broke these up into 25 and 25. Back to the bar. 9 singles with one wasted rep – I caught it forward and couldn’t control it.  That sucked!

Ok, Bar Musce Ups. Time to shine! My forearms were blown but I managed 5 unbroken. They weren’t pretty. The rest of my 15 were singles with one double mixed in. They took longer than I had wanted but I was out of breath and I just couldn’t go any faster.

I returned to the Double Unders and managed to get back to the Snatches. I think I got out about 6 before the buzzer sounded. Another tough one. I thought I would have done better.

With 2.5 hours to go before the final workout I grabbed something to eat from the food van in the arena and squeezed in a 15 minute nap on the floor in the athletes village.  It felt so good.

The 3rd workout was a Ground to Overhead ladder starting at 50kg, and going up 10kg all the way to 110kg. The WOD went for 7 minutes where we would have 1 minute on each weight to punch out as many reps as possible before moving onto the next weight.  Score was total reps, not total weight.

Again we watched the heats before us to get an idea of a strategy and see how people were moving through the ever increasing weights.  Everyone was going hard on the first two and then just moving through the next ones as well as they could.  There was a dramatic drop in the number of reps performed after the 2nd minute.

I said to Stav, “I’m just going to be methodical through this.  I’m going to hit sets of 5 on the first one and have short rests in-between.”  My goal was to hit 20 at 50kg.  Stav said,”if I have to Squat Clean it, I’m not lifting it.  I’ll be stopping at 80″.  Stav had recently had surgery on multiple hernias, so the fact that he was even here competing was a monumental effort.  The guy is a beast!

When the WOD started I moved onto the platform and started lifting. 1, 2…4, 5 (keep going, it feels good), 6…9…11, 12, 13.  I sucked in some air for about 10 secs and knocked out another 5.  I heard the bell ring signalling us to move onto the next bar.  Damn, I didn’t hit the 20.  Damn, I didn’t stick to the plan.  Damn, I’m really out of breath.

I ended up doing singles on the 60 and it was nowhere near what I had planned.  I progressed through the next weights really breathing hard and managed only a few reps, with, I think 2 @ 90kg, 1 @ 100kg, and a solid deadlift @110kg.  7 minutes later it was all over and so was the competition for me.  I watched Stav do his final lift of 100 which I’m pretty sure was a Power Clean into a Strict Press.  Like I said, Beast!

As we were finished, we were now able to relax and watch the rest of our NSW team compete.  And compete they did.  Everyone threw in 100%.  It was really cool to witness these people, many of whom were now friends, put in their heart and soul to do their best.

And that’s what got us over the line.  Later that night at a gala presentation dinner (I felt like I was at the Logies, not that I’ve ever been) it was announced that NSW had won the 2017 Masters League State of Origin series.  When the announcement was made, the New South Welshmen and women went off!  All of our hard work paid off.

This competition for me was a chance to perform amongst a top calibre field of athletes; a chance to throw-down with a good mate – Stav; an opportunity to measure myself against my peers; a prospect of being inspired and motivated by others; and lastly, an opportunity to meet and mix with some legendary people and make new friends.

Thanks to everyone involved who made this happen – Joe Riego and his team (you’ve created something awesome), the volunteers (comps do not run without you – you guys are the backbone), our team Manager and Coach, Darren Tahu (thanks for all of the hard work you put in big guy), all of the NSW athletes (a great bunch of people I hope to see more of), and in particular, my team – Stav, Jen and Sylvia (it was an honour to be teamed up with you).

2018…….here I come.  Time to get busy!

-AB

WORKOUT OF THE DAY

STRENGTH
A. 15 mins to get 3RM Push Press

B. 15 mins to get 5RM Deadlift

METCON

In pairs, for time:

50 Seated Strict Dumbbell Press 15/10kg (2 DB’s)

75 DB Front Rack Walking Lunges 15/10kg (2 DB’s)

100 Straight Leg Raises

 

 

THE MASTERS LEAGUE – a competition for oldies who don’t act like they’re old

THE MASTERS LEAGUE – a competition for oldies who don’t act like they’re old

This past weekend I was privileged enough to be a member of the NSW Masters League State of Origin Team.  I say “privileged” because I was able to immerse myself into an environment that was hugely positive and inspirational.  I got to witness first-hand the spirit and drive of a group of people who refuse to let age define them (by normal society’s standards); who refuse to lay down and let life pass them by; and who are still pushing their limits and improving daily.

When I watch 60+ year old men and women throwing 60/40kg overhead, and repping out toes to bar like it’s nothing unusual, I can’t help but be motivated to continue my own journey of progression and look forward to the years ahead.

Leading up to the comp I was feeling physically very unprepared.  A 6 week trip to Africa only a month ago meant there was a very valuable 6 weeks of training that was absent from my regime.  For me, that’s a huge deal.  Coupled with very poor nutrition over that period, and things weren’t looking good at all.

When I returned to training I had lost my momentum (not my motivation), I had lost weight (insert “muscle”, insert “strength”), and my cardio was at an all time low.  Somehow I had picked up some breathing issues overseas which meant I had a return of “exercise induced asthma” (yes, it’s a thing) which I had not had for years.  In a nutshell, I was feeling very undercooked.

But hey, I wasn’t going to pass on the opportunity to be a part of the NSW Team so I remained committed.  I did what I could to try to regain my pre-Africa fitness knowing that come comp time, so much of what I was going to do would come down to my mental strength just as much as physical strength.

So here’s a run down of how the two days of competition unfolded for me.

I hooked with my mate and fellow team member Gary “Stav, the Greek God, the People’s Athlete” Stavrakis.  He and I had gone head to head many times before and we had become friends over the years.  I knew I was in good hands.  What I/we didn’t know was who the two girls in our team were. “Do you know who Jen Harley is?” “No”. “What about Sylivia Atkinson?” “Nope”.  I know, not a great start to a two day, gruelling competition where knowing your team mates intimately (in a training sense) is pretty damn important.

But our NSW Team briefing, comprised of athletes representing 4 person mixed teams in age groups (35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50+ and 60+) and categories (Soldier, Warrior, Hero), provided the opportunity to meet our two female team members.  Jen Harley and Sylvia Atkinson were both weapons.  I had seen them compete before but until then, I had never actually met them.

During the NSW team briefing we talked about the 5 workouts we would have to do, what standards were required, and how the following days would unfold.  Then we split off into our individual teams to get to know each other and talk strategy.  It quickly became apparent that we had a pretty rock solid team with a fair bit of competition experience amongst us.  Day one of competition involved two team workouts, and day two of the competition involved 3 individual workouts.  We quickly talked strategy for the team workouts – where our strengths were, what our weaknesses were, who wanted to do what – it was pretty easy and everyone was happy.

Our first workout was a 12 min Indian File AMRAP of 10 Toes to Bar and 15 Kettlebells Swings 24/16kg, with a 30m run between the two stations.  Bonus reps could be accumulated by any non-working member performing Pistols (one person at a time).  Jen and I, who are fairly proficient at  Pistols, decided to knock out as many Pistols as possible while we weren’t working and this dictated the order we went in – Me, Stav, Jen, Sylvia.

When the WOD kicked off I ran to the rig and punched out 10 unbroken Toes to Bar.  During this time Jen started on her Pistols.  After the Toes to Bar, I ran back and Stav took off.  I picked up the Kettlebell and did 15 straight then dumped it and pumped out 18 Pistols.  Great, I could rest. Nope! By the time I finished the Pistols, Sylvia had finished her toes to bar and it was my turn to run again to the rig to start it all over.  There wasn’t any rest which was not what we had anticipated.  Things were moving pretty fast!

I don’t know what our final rep score was but I did about 5 rounds of Toes to Bar (3 rounds were unbroken, 4 and 5 were broken up).  All of my Kettlebell Swings were unbroken.  And my Pistols looked something like 18-12-8-10-6.  There may have been an extra round.  I honestly can’t remember.

I had actually performed an extra 8 reps of Toes to Bar over the course of the workout because my Judge was “No repping” me.  He didn’t tell me why, but I can say with absolute honesty that every single one of my reps had my toes hitting the bar as per standards.  Many people would have asked “why?”, some would have stopped, and a few would have gotten angry and argued with the Judge.  I didn’t bat an eyelid, I just kept repping them out until he told me I was good.  From a spectator’s point of view it would have just looked like I really loved toes to bar and wanted to do extra reps for the hell of it.

When I spoke to my team after the WOD, they all had a similar experience with the Judge – getting “No repped” but not knowing why.  It is what it is.  These Judges are volunteers.  They are not getting paid.  It happens.  We moved on and were happy with our performance.

WOD 2 was a cardio buffet where we had to work in male/female pairs in an Indian File fashion through a 300m Run (together), 40 Burpees (20 each), 700m Row (shared), 40 Burpees (20 each), 200m Swim (each).

We decided we’d get our two fastest runners to start so Jen and Stav kicked off proceedings and headed out on their run.  Once they finished their 40 Burpees, then Sylvia and I were able to run.  Jen and Stav broke up their burpees in sets of 5.  Sylvia and I did sets of 10.  Sylvia was fast….very fast.  I barely caught my breath before I had to Burpee again.  After that, we moved onto the Rower.  Sylvia indicated she was not a great Rower so I did 500m and she did 200m.  I was blowing pretty hard by this stage.  As soon as Sylvia finished her 200m, it was back into the 40 Burpees (sets of 10 again).  We stayed consistently fast.  While Sylvia was doing her final set of Burpees, I started stripping off for the swim.  I kicked off my shoes and socks, ripped off my shorts (I was wearing compression shorts underneath), and then took off at a sprint when she finished, towards the pool (about 50m away).

I was really breathing hard but I was super pumped to get into the pool to try to finish the 200m before the 10 min timecap was reached.  It was about 8 mins at that stage.  Stav and Jen were already working through their laps.

Now leading up to this event we had spoken to other teams who had already done it, and EVERYONE said that the swim sucked!  It didn’t matter if you were a seasoned swimmer or not.  All of the work done beforehand meant that you were about to embark on a 200m swim with immense oxygen deficit and fatigue – legs and shoulders.

But as I was running to the pool, I had adrenaline pumping through my body.  I used to be a really good swimmer……when I was in high school……about 30 years ago.  In the short time it took to get to the pool I had the plan laid out in my head – take the biggest running jump possible and dive into the pool to maximise the distance covered without swimming, and then flow straight into Freestyle and get to the end.  Well I did my big jump and dive (did anyone catch that on video?), and torpedoed underwater and then broke the surface.  Boom! Straight into Freestyle.  I reckon I got out about 4 strokes before my brain realised what my body already knew – I have no air in my lungs, I can’t breathe, and my legs and shoulders are full of lactic acid.  Damn!  Plan out the window.  I transitioned to breaststroke.

The next 2 minutes went by very quick and I managed to get out 100m – the slowest 100m swim I have ever done.  It was stuttered with a few Freestyle strokes, a heap of Breaststroke, a failed attempt to walk (it was too deep and I sunk to the bottom), and a lot of big gulps of precious oxygen.

When the WOD was over I dragged myself out of the pool and laid on my back, gasping for air with my triceps on fire (I don’t know why, but they felt the same way your legs feel when you get off the Assault Bike).

I hooked up with my team and we reflected on the past ten minutes of horribleness.  We did alright and passed a few of the other teams who were ahead of us at the start.

Day one was over and we were happy.  We had been at the venue since 3pm and none of us had eaten any dinner.  When we got away, it was 10.30pm.  Stav and I were starving, and with little open at that time, and accompanied by a desire to eat quick and then go to sleep, we did the unimaginable………..Maccas drive-thru.  It wasn’t ideal but we just needed to eat……and then sleep so that we could be up at 6am for Day 2.

To be continued………

-AB (the artist formerly known as “the people’s warrior”)

WORKOUT OF THE DAY

METCON
A. 120 sec (that’s 2 mins) Deadhang

***Drop and do 5 Sit-ups if you come off before 2 mins, then continue.

B. 15 min EMOM (every 5 mins)

250m Row

15 Push Press 40/30kg

15 Burpees

C. 15 min EMOM (every 3 mins)

5 Front Squats @ 70% of 1RM

10 Strict Pull-ups

 

This is why I won’t stop competing.

 

The GEO “Sea of Red” swamps the Riot Squad Comp last weekend. A big congrats to everyone who took part. You guys nailed it!

THIS IS WHY I WON’T STOP COMPETING

This past weekend a group of us from GEO headed north to Gosford to take part in the two-day Riot Squad Team competition.

Teams of 4 (mixed, all male, and all female) were comprised of varying levels of competition experience.  For Tiffany, Dan and Harry (I mean Larry, I mean Barry, I mean Garry), it was their very first comp, but to see them in action, you would not have thought so.  And for the rest of us seasoned campaigners, well this was another CrossFit comp where we knew were going to hurt.

I stayed with my parents the night before on the Central Coast and my Dad asked me, “How long are you going to keep this up?” referring to me taking part in competitions and challenges at age 45.  To which I replied, “Until my body doesn’t let me do it anymore.”

Why do I do it?  Why does anyone do it?

Here’s what I get out of competing:

A sense of achievement.  Put simply, through competition I get to put my body, mind and soul up against a challenge that will test me.  I get to push myself to a place that is well beyond anything remotely close to normal, everyday life, and in doing so, I get a tremendous amount of self satisfaction and a sense of achievement.  Just trying is enough, but if I actually accomplish/finish a task, then that is even better.  Sometimes I go into a competition/challenge with a very clear goal and desire to win.  The chance to prove myself against other athletes feeds my ego in a positive way.  Other times I take part purely for the experience of pushing myself and trying new things.  Either one gives me a sense of achievement, no matter the result.

Learning through failure.  Failure is a teacher.  Failure lets me know what I did wrong, and what I need to do to fix it.  Failure builds character and fortitude. But Failure only does this if I am willing to stand up each time I get knocked down.  A lot of people are scared to Fail something, so they don’t even try.  Even if that means there is very little sacrifice or effort required.  They miss out on something beautiful because they don’t want to look weak or poor in front of others, or they don’t have enough confidence or belief in themselves.

On the weekend, in the Riot comp, I failed a lift.  A lift that I know I can do.  I reflected on why I failed (poor commitment to training recently) and now know what I need to do to remedy the situation – commit time each week to performing Cleans and Front Squats.

During the Ninja Warrior series last year, I failed on the tilting ladders obstacle and landed in the drink.  I reflected upon that and I now know that I need to do more grip and climbing work, and I need to move faster if I am to succeed on that course.

If you are willing to learn from your mistakes, then Failure can be a good thing.

Bonding with my mates.  There is something to be said about sharing a moment, or in  this case, two days, of pain and suffering with others.  It creates a bond that allows me to empathise with others who are going through the same experience.  I know the joy, the disappointment, and the raw emotions that they are feeling.  And because of that, I am in a better position to encourage, support and motivate them to keep going, and they can do the same for me. It gives me the opportunity to step up my game and push harder than I normally would because I do not want to let my mates down.  We push each other up, not hold each other back.

I can explore my potential.  I push my boundaries because I want to know what I am capable of.  I search for my limits so that I can touch them, and them nudge them a bit further out.  This keeps me motivated to be better and gives me something to work towards.  And it allows me to be in charge of whether or not I reach my potential.

Also, if I know that I can do something in a competition setting, under physical duress and mental stress, then challenges that pop up in everyday life are just that little bit easier to handle.

Calming the mind and learning to breathe.  Related to the point above, competition allows me to work and think under incredible amounts of stress.  If I don’t know how to calm my thoughts and be present (through breathing) then things can get out of hand.  When the poo poo hits the fan, no-one is going to be served well by someone who is highly strung, anxious, and panicky.  Learning to calm my mind in stressful situations means I can make better decisions about how to proceed next – something that is useful in competition and in life.

WORKOUT OF THE DAY

METCON

5 rounds for time of:

50 Double Unders/150 Singles

10 Chest to Bar Pull-ups/15 Pull-ups/20 Ring Rows

10 Burpees

STRENGTH

15 mins to get 5RM Back Squat

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